Shocked? Surprised? Not me.
Only 38,000 jobs were created in May according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. A far cry from the anticipated 164,000. And while the unemployment rate dropped to 4.7 percent, nearly 500,000 people simply dropped out of the labor market. The labor participation rate now stands at 62.6 percent -- a 38 year low.
For months I've been saying the Administration and the Federal Reserve should pay attention to an alarming statistic that, in my opinion, is the key to an economic recovery and that is the number of small business start-ups vs. closures. For the first time since the Census Bureau began collecting data, the number of small business closures exceeds the number of start-ups. Small businesses are the job creators and the primary source of innovation in this country. If the small business sector isn't growing, neither will the U.S. economy.
It's time to listen to small business.
Recently I testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Small Business Committee. I explained that this era of hyper-regulation is killing small businesses. The regulatory burden costs businesses trillions of dollars annually and small businesses pay 36 percent more than larger enterprises.
The complexity of the tax code limits small business growth. Tax compliance costs small firms 206 percent more than larger entities. Furthermore, the complexity in the code results in small businesses failing to take advantage of legitimate deductions and tax credits.
Small businesses were promised affordable healthcare under the ACA, but the opposite has occurred. Premiums continue to increase. Most small businesses prefer to keep their headcount below 50 in order to avoid the employer mandate.
The increase in the minimum wage and overtime eligibility gives many small businesses no other choice than to cut jobs or transition current staff to part-time. These increases puts further strain on already struggling small businesses who are barely keeping their noses above water.
Isn't it time to pay attention to what's happening to small businesses in the U.S.? Instead of doling out more entitlements and onerous regulations? Why not give these visionary risk-takers support and an opportunity to prosper so they can create jobs.
I'm personally fed up with the lack of regard for our entrepreneurs. They are the heart and soul of our communities and they are systematically getting stamped out by this Administration's policies.
It's plain and simple. Get small businesses growing again and our economy will recover. That means getting the government the heck out of our businesses. Until then -- expect more of the same.
The jobs numbers -- no surprise to me. Hopefully they will serve as a wake up call to our current Administration that something needs to be done sooner rather than later. We can't survive another four or eight years of the same political thinking.